Are you currently in a close relationship, spending evenings and weekends together, sharing unique activities and intimate moments that are special to the two of you?

· Do you get upset when your partner spends an extra evening out or goes away for a weekend or a week without you?

· If either of you travels often for business, does that cause problems, upsets and conflicts in your relationship?

· When your partner is away from you for several days, a week, or a month, do you find yourself seeking companionship in the arms of someone else?

· Do you need and demand a lot of personal attention, emotional comforting, communication, understanding, hand-holding, support at family and business functions, regular sexual contact, assistance with child rearing, or just having someone else in your home with you?

If you answered "Yes" to any of the above questions, then you have probably never thought about this next question:

What would it be like for you to be in love with, involved with, and/or married to a soldier, a man or woman who is enlisted in the armed forces in the army, navy, marines, air force, or another venue? What if your partner was with you every day and you shared wonderful romantic days and nights, and then, suddenly, the letter came. "Report for overseas duty on the following date...."

How would you handle the situation? Would you make the most of every moment you have left together or would you begin to create stress - anger, mood swings, sadness, depression, anxiety - because of your own fear of separation? Would you focus on comforting the other person or would you be more concerned with your own fear of abandonment, loneliness or uncertainty?

Perhaps you are currently living with a soldier or you, yourself, are currently or have been deployed overseas. Perhaps your most intimate relationship has become shaky, difficult, fraught with anger and emotional imbalances, and you have been blaming yourself or blaming your partner. Perhaps you have already split up with that person you loved before the enforced separation.

The stress and strain of being an army spouse is not talked about much. There is ongoing and daily uncertainty when a beloved and needed partner is deployed overseas in a war torn environment with the possibility of being injured, captured, maimed or killed at any instant. Their letters might not convey the sensitivity that the person remaining at home expects. There may not be much verbal communication for a very long period of time.

The person fighting for this country or serving to assist injured soldiers might be seeing and experiencing some terrifying, horrific and unimaginable scenes. There might be someone right nearby sharing the same terrible moments. An affair might occur in a moment of severe emotional confusion, upset or trauma.

The person remaining at home may feel empty, scared, alone, and angry at having all the child rearing, family, or financial responsibilities. This person may share some emotional concerns with a fellow neighbor or colleague at work. An affair might occur in a moment of emotional pain, anxiety, stress, fear or just a sense of "What's the point?"

And then the soldier returns home. But this person returning home may be very different from that romantic, sensitive, kind person who left only a few short months or years ago. The kinds of traumatic events, the physical traumas and injuries, the excitement and life stopping exhilaration in the midst of terror, may now lead to anger, depression, brain injury, physical ailments, drug addiction and mental problems that can be extremely difficult for even the most caring spouse to handle. One or both may have gotten involved with another person, being unfaithful to the marital or commitment bonds.

If you are personally involved with a soldier or if you yourself are a returning soldier, just remember that there are resources available to help you cope with many of these seemingly insurmountable problems. There are marriage and family therapists specifically trained to understand and help you overcome barriers to recreating love. There are psychiatrists that can offer appropriate medications to calm the nerves or balance the brain chemistry. There are mental health counselors and psychologists to deal with emotional problems and mental concerns. And, there are body therapists and body oriented psychotherapists that can help you actually release traumatic memories that are stored in body tissues.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Erica Goodstone has helped thousands of men, women, couples, and groups to develop greater awareness of the issues in their relationships and their lives, to overcome and alleviate stressors and discords, and to revitalize their relationships and their own mind-body-spirit connection. Dr. Goodstone can be contacted through her web site at and you can take the Create Healing and Love Now Personal quiz and get your free asessment report at